Nicole Kidman has been tied to the film Australia for almost four years; about the same time that she has been with Keith Urban. The failure of this film was not like the failure of her other films; this one was important, VERY important. Kidman used all the successful tools she has in the past to promote the movie. Her image, her reputation and her personal life were all promoted to make this movie a success.
Baz Luhrmann is considered Nicole Kidman's director. When an actor has such a close association with a director you can have good results: Diane Keaton and Woody Allen or Tom Hanks and Ron Howard, or terrible results such as Hitchcock and Tippi Hendron. Baz had success with Kidman in Moulin Rouge! and it really elevated both of their careers. The successful ad campaign for Chanel added to the expectations for this film. Both of their reputations were at stake for this film and the preliminary buzz for almost two years was strong.
No one expected a failure of these proportions. Both Kidman’s image and reputation have suffered fatal blows. She is a joke; the star who has to have special effects for her facial images; the beauty who is so afraid of aging that she shot poison into her face to stay young.
Kidman tied her image to this film; she also tied her personal life to it. Her relationship with Keith Urban was about a fellow Aussie going back to the homeland and they played it. Their wedding was a tribute to Oz. Baz inspired the design of the interior of the church and the reception. The guest list was the A-list of all Australian figures. Hugh Jackman sang a song written by famous Oz export Peter Allen. And mentioned in the press was the fact that Nicole wanted to return to her roots - her Australian roots. She was prepping for the big film for the next six months, besides putting her husband in rehab. She was going through the motions with Margot at the Wedding and The Invasion, as those would pale compared to the epic. Then the filming started and for the next nine months we heard about the set and her costumes, yada yada, and Keith running across the world to be with her on the set, etc. Then we had the royal baby, and yes, Kidman tied her child’s conception to the film, to the magic with Baz. As it became apparent the film was not going to be a hit, Kidman even pulled out the baby for PR, even after vowing she wouldn’t do that very thing.
So what happened? Who knows at this early date, but the movie was not that great. Kidman could no longer count on the Australian public to support her. They did when Tommy left her, but they have deemed her the tallest poppy of them all and she has run to hide in the United States. This movie was too important to Kidman and its failure will mark a turning point in her career. She will either overcome this or her career is over. No wonder she is gathering her family around. No one likes to be made fun of or told they are ugly and have no talent, but as they say, the truth hurts and for Nicole Kidman this is long overdue. The person to feel sorry for is Keith Urban; he will either have to pick up the pieces with her or he will have to turn into the bad guy and walk away. Since he has never left a woman in his past we see him being the supportive spouse, at least for a little while. It must suck to be Nicole right now. We (don’t) feel so sorry for her.